The baseball world was rocked on Tuesday morning with a report out of the Miami New Times that several celebrities and athletes are among those who have documented proof of performance enhancing drug use against them.
Cited in the report are some of baseball’s best players, headlined by Alex Rodriguez and Melky Cabrera.
The report says that there are over a dozen players that have the proof against them, including Texas Rangers star Nelson Cruz. Bartolo Colon is on the list, as well as Yasmani Grandal. Even Washington Nationals superstar Gio Gonzalez is on the list.
January 29, 2013 will be remembered as another very dark day in baseball.
So what has happened here? Wasn’t the steroid era over? Wasn’t the asterisk part behind us? Not at all. In fact, it may be the beginning of a long and drawn out process where the fans may never feel they’ve fully got the trust of the players back.
It can not be understated how damaging this is, not just for the players involved, but for every single player in Major League Baseball. Even if all these players are subjected to drug tests and the whole nine yards, who’s to say the next wave of players won’t be using, hoping to elude the truth getting out?
As a baseball fan, I am absolutely furious. This is no longer about a 50-game ban for policy violation. This is no longer about a punishment within the rules of the game or its mandates. It’s about the fact that the fans have had it up to here with these complete phony-bologna press conferences and lies about how players aren’t using. It’s the fans’ game, and it’s high time something drastic was done to take it back.
It’s obvious that the players, owners and the commissioner are willing to do nothing about it. Fans should demand constant testing as well as even more frequent test if your numbers are among the league leaders.
This is something that shouldn’t even be up for debate. Penalties for use also need to become harsh, as in banned for multiple years. A 50-game ban is almost like a strategic rest to older players and doesn’t at all mean they’re not going to use again.
It’s hard to say what the future of baseball will be after this, but it’s likely that with the image hit, A-Rod will be done in New York. Look for a wave of other releases as the image of these teams cannot be tarnished by being perceived as harboring cheaters.